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October 13, 2011

House Passes ‘Let Women Die’ Bill

H.R.358 is the seventh anti-choice measure to pass the House since January of this year

Washington, D.C. – Today, Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, called the House passage of the “Let Women Die” bill, otherwise known as H.R.358, yet another reminder of how playing politics with women’s health and privacy is a priority for Speaker John Boehner.

“Americans are facing real challenges, yet House Speaker John Boehner is ignoring the public’s call for Congress to focus on jobs, “said Keenan. “Instead, he is coming up with new ways to give politicians more control over our personal, private decisions. The House’s attacks on women’s freedom and privacy are out of touch with our nation’s values and priorities.”

H.R.358 is part of Speaker Boehner’s ongoing agenda to attack women’s privacy and take away the right to choose.  This is the House’s seventh vote attacking choice since January. In February, the anti-choice leadership brought the government to the brink of shutdown over its obsession with defunding Planned Parenthood. In May, the House passed H.R.3 (a companion bill to H.R.358). These two bills made headlines earlier this year because they both included language that redefined rape to make it more difficult for sexual-assault survivors to access abortion care.  Boehner caved to public outrage on that issue, both bills still jeopardize women’s health.  Shockingly, H.R.358 would allow hospitals to refuse to provide a woman emergency, lifesaving abortion care, even if she will die without it.

The Obama administration announced its opposition to H.R. 358 on the grounds that “the legislation intrudes on women's reproductive freedom and access to health care and unnecessarily restricts the private insurance choices that women and their families have today.” The administration went on to say that, “if President Obama is presented with H.R. 358, his senior advisors would recommend that he veto the bill.”

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